And now comes the life AFTER whole30. Today is the first day to my food freedom. I have not yet eaten anything "not whole30" as I still feel good and feel in control. I LIKE how I feel eating a clean diet and I will continue to eat like this until one day something so good comes along that I do not want to pass up.
This is "Food Freedom".
Continuing to eat a clean and healthy diet while also not restricting anything from your diet. (When I say diet, I am referring to the general term of "what you eat". I typically am not referring to a "diet" that you might be thinking of.)
Food freedom to me does not mean I am going to fall off the face of the earth and stuff my face with food now that I am done with my whole30. I am now in the next phase of this process and that is reintroduction.
Reintroduction is a slow and continuous process to see what does and does not work with my body. I am going to do what author Melissa Hartwig calls the "slow roll". I am not going to eat whatever I want but I am rather going to continue to eat how I have been the past few weeks and every so often I am going to introduce a new food when it come along. I may not plan this, or I may plan to have some corn tortillas with breakfast. The most important part of this process is to NOTICE how my body reacts to these foods so I can know for the future what to expect when I eat these foods. I will keep my updates in my blog, mainly so that I can go back to my blog and read and remember how I felt when I had those foods. Now there may also be different contributors to how I felt when I ate those things, like what else did I eat with it? Does that other food usually make me feel off?
I am excited to reintroduce new foods into my diet. This has been a long learning process that I have been in for years while getting more and more into nutrition. For instance, I already know that dairy REALLY affects me. I know that if I have dairy, my insides are doomed for at least 12 hours. So for now, I will not eat dairy until something comes up that I can't pass up and that I know the food will be "worth it". Would I rather eat this and feel like crap? Or can I live without this food and continue to feel good?
Follow my journey on my path to food freedom and self experimentation about my body :)
I am blogging about some of my experiences from the whole30 January 2017 so that I can look back at these posts and see what did and did not work for my body. These are some things that everyone can go through and experiment with their body to see what hurts and what makes their bodies feel good.
This is about my fifth time doing the whole30 but this time I really started to feel it was my most successful whole30 and also since I have gotten older I am starting to really understand what works and what does not work for my body. Things change and my body might react differently in different years.
I am on day 23 of the whole30 January 2017 (contact me if you want to learn more about the whole30 or need support going through the whole30). This has been one of my most successful whole30's and I am so proud of myself. I really was not sure how I was going to make it through this after the holidays but I am going into week four, feel amazing and basically don't want it to end. Therefore my reintroduction phase will be long and slow.
A quick overview from the past few weeks:
The first two weeks of this program were THE WORST. I am not trying to scare you away from the program because I think everyone should do this program and I think it is so beneficial, but getting there might be tough. For me, the first two weeks I had multiple mental breakdowns, hunger cravings, I wanted to Kill All Things and eat everything! Well these are the side effects during these times. Melissa Hartwig outlines in her book The Whole30 of every side effect and on which day. And to say the least, these were almost exactly how I was feeling. If you read about them you will basically see what I was going through for the first two weeks. It was tough but it has been sooooo worth it. I was very very lethargic and tired the first couple of weeks but that was because my body was detoxing and trying to run on healthy fuel and run off of more fats. I did not go through the holidays lightly and I ate what we all want to eat throughout the holidays. I was sooo addicted to sugar and did not want to stop eating it. I loved it and I ate it every chance I got. Going from eating sugar all the time to not eating sugar was a transition for me but I am not proud to say I have tamed my sugar dragon (sugar dragon is a term they use in whole30 when you feel like you cannot control your sugar intake). I feel so accomplished being able to not think and rely on sugary foods.
Going into week three and four I have regained my energy, and feel more energetic and more productive. Although the first two weeks I may have had breakdowns and struggles and cravings, I am not having breakdowns (as much), and if I do, I am learning to cope with my stress in other ways because I do tend to turn to food for comfort. It has been a relief not having to rely on food as comfort and finding other things to keep my mind off of eating and sobbing in sugar. It feels good to have control of what I eat, instead of having food control me.
Around week three we went out to eat and I had gotten a burger (with portabella mushroom buns and no sauces). The place we went to has good ground beef from a local farmer. There was also bacon and jalapenos on the burger and I got it with sweet potato fries. As some people may say, this is not whole30, and I thought about it too, this may not be whole30 but I also have a past of binge eating, bulimia, food restriction, and negative food habits so going into the whole30 I am not restricting foods that are compliant at restaurants for example. The food was delicious and I felt amazing about what I had ordered. And so did the wait staff and chef. They have never made this burger but they had said they were all "jealous" and wanted to try the creation. Following that night and the next day, I had an upset stomach. Was it the ground beef? Was it the bacon? Was it the sweet potato fries? Was it the cooking oil? Was it a combination of all? The best part about eating these foods and noticing my stomach was not having it, is knowing I am listening to my body and hearing what it is telling me. I continued to eat whole30 foods and my stomach had gone back to normal within a few days. I then had home cooked ground beef about two days later (I haven't had much ground beef this round of the whole30), it surprised me because my stomach started to get a little bloated from my lunch with ground beef and I don't know why but this was the second time after having a meal with ground beef that my stomach did not feel good. I am not sure if it is from the ground beef or not but this is something I am going to note so that I can take it out of my diet and reintroduce it again with foods I know that do not upset my stomach.
As for ghee, this is a whole30 compliant food and it is delicious. I am lactose intolerant but ghee should have minimum traces of lactose and usually does not affect those who are lactose intolerant. During the first three weeks of the program I just had not bought ghee although I wanted to but never came across it and I just went without it because I had olive oil, coconut oil and avocado oil at hand to use. Well I bought ghee and used it last night with dinner on EVERYTHING because I was so excited I finally had it. Well lets just say I am not tolerant to the ghee that I bought because my stomach was NOT having it. Unfortunately now I know I cannot eat ghee. This is a learning process for myself with learning what foods I can and cannot eat and I am loving this process <3.
Just recently I decided to jump back into a paleo lifestyle again. Years ago I was on and off eating paleo religiously and felt amazing. I had missed that amazing feeling and wanted my good feelings back. I decided to jump in head first and start a Whole 30.
You can read more about the Whole 30 here, but basically it is a lot like the paleo diet but strict and focused on whole foods and not creating paleo desserts because it takes you away from what they are trying to get you back to and that is real, whole foods. It excludes grains, dairy and soy. There are a few other guidelines to follow, just head over to their website if you ever want to try it.
For me this was a great way to get my health back on track, my natural energy back on track, and to well shred some unwanted pounds-because yes this naturally happens on the whole30.
For the first few days to a week it was good and my mentality was restricting those foods that I could not have. Now this felt great during the time but then came towards the end---day 14.
My family was in town, there was chips and homemade salsa on the table, I was hungry and BAM, just like that it was OVER. I caved. I ate so many chips and salsa the next few days I almost got sick of it. ALMOST.
Now, where am I going with this?
I failed, I gave up, I cheated.
It is NOT the end of the world. I am human, and NO, sometimes I cannot just do something for 30 days because it makes me go crazy and felt like a lifetime. Props to those of you who can go through something for a few weeks and not give in to anything. I unfortunately am not one of those people.
It has taken me a long time to sit down and write this blog post.
I did not want ANYONE to know that I can't even follow a few simply guidelines for 30 days. Because I can't. For me, it's not attainable.
It has been a few weeks since I have came back to my senses after falling out of the whole 30. I have been doing a lot of personal development on WHY this is OKAY.
I have been reading the book Intuitive Eating and learning a lot about myself.
It's okay to give in a little here and there. It is okay to have a cookie once in a while, or some damn chips and salsa for Christs sake. All these years I have been on a continuous cycle of binging/restricing/binging/restricting. I am most definitely a yo-yo dieter.
I will try a diet, finish it and splurge! Or splurge the night before I START a diet. Does this sound familiar? If this sounds like you please read on.
Intuitive Eating is really all about listening to your body and eating more mindful. Eat when your hungry, stop when your full. Simple as that. Well there is a lot more to it that we don't always understand. I am on Chapter 2 of Intuitive Eating and I already understand the things that these doctors are talking about. I am not a profession by any means but I really think this idea is something huge.
No more obsessing.
No more dieting.
No more binging.
It sounds too good to be true.
And for right now where I am at in my life, it might be. I need to understand the principles behind the way of eating before I can actually take this on. Everyday I try to think about my hunger and fullness cues. NOW that is the first step. RECOGNIZING.
Recognize your habits. Don't judge them. Don't try to stop yourself.
Just recognize. Later down the line, in a few days, months, years (yes years) you may be able to grasp this idea of listening to your body.
We all get so caught up in what is the newest FAD diet, nutrition supplement, or whatever!
But don't listen to them. Listen to your BODY. Do whats right for YOU.
Did that chocolate cake make you feel like shit?
Well then maybe next time you want a piece of chocolate cake you will say no thank you because it DID NOT MAKE YOUR BODY FEEL GOOD.
Now I am not saying don't ever eat chocolate cake again, but what I am saying is to listen to your body. If something doesn't settle well with you, then maybe you won't want to put it in your body and make yourself feel like shit.
Eat real foods, get REAL energy. LIVE your life. Listen to your body. Respect your body. Please do this for your own good self and treat your body with RESPECT DAMMIT.
I know it's easier said than done, trust me I do. This has been my vicious cycle of eating. I have been treating my body like crap on and off for years. Putting too much food in my stomach that it rejects it. Feeling so horrible for hours on end that I am crying on my bed because my stomach hurts so bad.
But now I am starting to get it. I need to listen to my body and understand what it is telling me. I never really truly understood that term until the past few weeks.
Something is clicking in my brain and I understand it.
Now I want to help you understand it too.
Fuel your body and mind and good things will come.
firstname.lastname@example.org---> I am an open book and have gone through a few things in my life. I want to help you with whatever you are going through because I CARE.
Over the past 4 days I have learned a lot. A lot about where I have come from nutritionally speaking, where I went throughout my journey to now and how I feel going into a whole30.
Paleo has a close spot in my heart because it is what got me started into nutrition. I don't even remember how I got hooked on it but it was probably when I first started getting into Crossfit. I remember when I went through my first whole30 almost 5 years ago now. I remember reading It Starts With Food and learning more and more about the paleo lifestyle. The "rules" for the whole 30 were a little bit different back then. It was super strict and if you had a minor thing that was NOT whole30-you were BOOTed.
Which I struggled with because I felt like I was NEVER going to finish a whole30 at the rate I was restarting every time. I finally finished my FIRST whole30 and felt AMAZING. I continued to live an on and off paleo lifestyle for the next 3 or so years after that. Paleo was my THING. I was obsessed with it. It got me into reading about nutrition, learning where your food comes from and why it helps to buy quality and what it all does to the body. I was obsessed with learning about healthy foods. I was into Crossfit at the time and living in an area of mainly fit people. I got carried away and since I was "dieting" with the whole30 and paleo, I fell into binge eating. I lost it. I was living in a place where everyone was running marathons, doing triathlons, competing in all kinds of sports, etc. I love EATING, so I knew I could never stop eating as much, so I overate to the point of well..purging. Gross. I hated throwing up but it was worth it for me. I was in a time in my life where I wanted to lose weight, be skinny, and be "healthy". AKA do-anything-it-took-to-lose-weight-including-throwing-up-and-over-exercising.
I got too caught up in the nutrition scene too fast and too hard and it took over my life.
Now don't get me wrong I did get some AMAZING things out of living where I did and getting caught up in the nutrition scene.
I started cooking more.
I was learning to honor my body with the right foods (except for binging and all the other things I fell into).
I LOVED nutrition.
Growing up I was obsessed with fitness and now my horizon was broaded to fitness and nutrition and I loved it!
>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>> ANYWAYS, enough blabber from me but lets fast forward to the past few days of jumping back into a whole30...
Mind you I have not been eating paleo for a solid 2 years ish or so. I have reintroduced things into my diet and I try to eat them in moderation but I notice that I do get tired after eating and my digestion is not always on par.
Recently I have figured out that I am lactose intolerant and it HURTS to eat dairy.
I never really knew where the pains were coming from and they were never THAT bad, except this past year they got a little out of hand so I have been experimenting and cutting them out and bringing them back and I bought lactaid pills to see if it helps and they work!
I want to start feeling better than before and well, I MISS the paleo community and support. It has definitely evolved within the past 5 years and it is something bigger and better than ever.
I love reading the research to back things up.
I am obsessed with listening to podcasts from both sides of the spectrum.
We have to create our OWN opinions on eating habits and what works best for OUR bodies.
The past few days have been an EYE opening experience and a reminder of why I started eating this way in the first place. It has only been 4 days and I have only worked out 2 of those days since I have been crazy busy with work (no excuse but I've been lazy when I get off), and I already feel thinner, healthier, more energy, and I don't get as many cravings as I was having just last week.
It's amazing what your body will do when you fuel it with the right nutrition and balanced meals.
Nutrition is a journey and I never want to stop my journey.
It has become a part of my life. We have to eat and we have to nourish our bodies. If we don't do that then we are potentially harming our bodies of toxic and life threatening things. Food will never leave your life whether you are a healthy or not.
I am just so excited to see where this new journey will take me and I want to share it with the WORLD how much good nutrition and the right eating plan for YOU can change your life.
I am a dedicated individual when it comes to health and fitness. I love the outdoors and being active.